Memorial Day is a celebration of life and sacrifice. It can feel like a solemn day because of how many brave individuals lost their lives to fight for the freedom of the United States, but it’s also a joyous celebration because of everything that sacrifice has afforded for so many. The best way we can honor this holiday is to show gratitude and honor to the memory of those we have lost in war. Keep reading for ideas that can inspire a meaningful Memorial Day celebration for you and your family this year.
Familiarize yourself with history.
How much do you really know about the wars fought by the United States? Unless you’ve dedicated your career or personal life to studying this subject, it’s likely there is a lot to learn. And for most Americans, we know so little about why we celebrate Memorial Day. Let’s change that this year. Open a book or search the internet for reliable and captivating resources that allow you a closer look inside some of the amazing stories of brave men and women who have fought for our country. Make it a family activity by watching a movie or documentary together, or reading a book aloud.
Display your pride for your country.
On Memorial Day, and any of the red, white, and blue holidays, you’ll see many people decorate their homes and lawns with American flag decorations. Join in the celebration by adding patriotic flags, bunting, wreaths, pillows, and garden accessories to your home. It doesn’t have to be much! A few items here and there will make your home welcoming and festive and help remind everyone that Memorial Day is approaching and why we should celebrate what it stands for.
Decorate a memorial site.
Think beyond your own home. It’s very meaningful on Memorial Day to help decorate the gravesites of United States soldiers. If you visit a cemetery around this time of year you are likely to find many flags placed near headstones noting that this is the resting place of a soldier. Those flags don’t get there on their own! It takes many hands to help honor these individuals. Consider reaching out to your local VFW, historic society or any other veterans clubs and organizations to see if they coordinate efforts to place flags on Memorial Day. Volunteer to help out this year and engage friends and family to join you.
Attend an event.
Be sure to check your local community calendars to see what events may be taking place on Memorial Day. Often there are parades, picnics, flag ceremonies, and other activities that are designed to help the whole family – of all ages – feel included and part of the celebration. Pick one or two activities you’d like to attend over the course of the holiday weekend and be intentional about remembering the reason for the occasion at each event.
Make it a family affair!
And finally, be sure to pick activities and ways to celebrate that appeal to the whole family. From the littlest to the oldest, there are sure to be things you can do that accommodate all interest levels and physical abilities. Most people celebrate Memorial Day over the course of the weekend. So from Friday through Monday, there will surely be something for everyone to enjoy. The more inclusive you can make the experiences, the more memorable they are likely to be.
How do you plan to enjoy Memorial Day this year? Do you have special plans to see family and friends, or to honor the memory of those who have sacrificed for our country?
Share some ideas so we can get inspired to make the most of this important holiday!